According to research from Georgetown University, nearly 65 million Americans have reported a recent episode of back pain. In fact, they also indicate that approximately 8% of Americans have chronic back pain problems. This causes…
Spinal cord injuries rank among the most potentially life-altering types of injuries one could ever suffer. The risks associated with spinal cord injuries are enormous, and the cascading impacts that these injuries can have on your life are massive. The World Health Organization explains that the severity of damage that one might experience from spinal cord injuries depends on the extent of the damage sustained and where on the spine that damage is done.
Some symptoms may include partial or complete loss of sensory function or motor control of arms, legs and/or body. The most severe spinal cord injury affects the systems that regulate bowel or bladder control, breathing, heart rate and blood pressure. One might find themselves in many situations that could result in a spinal cord injury. It is vital to understand the potential consequences of a spinal cord injury and how your life may be impacted. Our team at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery can help you understand your symptoms and work to create a treatment plan that can help.
How Can Spinal Cord Injuries Impact Your Quality of Life
How a spinal cord injury impacts one’s quality of life will differ from person to person, but almost everyone with this type of injury will experience some impact on their life. These changes may include:
Depending on the extent of the injury, one might experience partial or complete paralysis because of their spinal cord injury. The loss of sensation, either partial or full, can make it physically impossible to move around in the same ways that one did before.
Things one does without a second thought, such as sitting up or walking around, might become impossible to do after a spinal cord injury. Any spinal damage requires immediate medical attention and should be taken incredibly seriously.
The spine is directly connected to one’s fertility. The spinal cord sends signals to the brain telling it when to produce sperm or eggs. If the spinal cord is damaged, the back-and-forth communication between the spinal cord and the brain can become disrupted.
Mental Health Issues
It is common for people with spinal cord injuries to develop mental health issues because of that injury. If one already has issues like depression, those issues might worsen. The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center explains how this might play out for someone with a spinal cord injury:
- Feelings of sadness or anxiety might develop
- A period of adjustment might be necessary for many patients
- Clinical depression may develop in some patients
- A patient may require new treatments to help handle these issues (such as prescription anti-depressants)
In severe cases, it might be necessary for a patient to reach out to clinical psychologists to help them tackle the mental health issues that they suffer from. When new issues like this form in a spinal cord injury patient, they need to address those mental health issues on top of the physical issues that they suffer from because of their injury.
What You Can Do to Help Increase Quality of Life
Although it is scary to face the new life that unfolds before you after a spinal cord injury, there are things you can do to keep yourself healthier. A few of the steps that you can take on your spinal cord injury head-on:
- Keep Friends and Family Close: It is always best to keep friends and family close no matter what health challenges you face. This can help you with the mental and emotional support that you need.
- Join a Support Group: Support groups exist to help people who are combating spinal cord injuries. If you choose, you can join a support group and get the backing and support you require.
- Stay Active: Although some physical activities might be off the table, you should still try to remain as physically active as possible. This can help you prevent worse physical outcomes.
There is hope even if you have suffered a spinal cord injury. Reach out to a spinal specialist for help with treatment.
Contact Our Team of Specialists in Florida at Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery Today
At Orthopedic & Laser Spine Surgery, we will gladly work with you to provide you with the treatments you require for your spinal cord injury. If this is something that you have been trying to take care of, then we want to help you take the first few steps in the right direction to make that happen.